“The February born shall find

Sincerity and peace of mind,

Freedom from passion and from care,

If they, the amethyst they wear."     (February Birthstone Poem)

Coming from the Greek word “amethystos”, which indicate “not drunk” Amethyst as it is widely known now is the birthstone for the month of February. The stone is richly steeped in various interesting legends and meanings and shares a deep connection with religions in several cultures.  At first look, the gemstone will emanate a feeling of romance and passion. They were coveted by royalty and was once a stone that adorned the rich and powerful rulers and monarchs. The intense, beautiful color itself makes the gemstone a widely popular choice today, with more and more people representing their life’s story through them.

The gemstone is sourced mainly from Brazil, Uruguay and from some parts of U.S like North Carolina and Arizona. Amethyst basically belongs to the quartz family and is the purple variety of the mineral quartz. The purple hue varies from a light-heated violet to a deep and rich purple. There can be other secondary hues like reds and blues. Some scientists are of the opinion that the breathtaking purple color of the stone is due to the amethysts’ iron oxide content, while some other scientists opine that the color springs from the presence of hydrocarbons or manganese. Amethysts are highly sensitive to heat and hence when heated to a very high temperature, it can change its color to a brownish-yellow or red or even green.

Amethyst has a long and rich history which goes back to as far as 25, 000 years ago in France. The prehistoric humans used the stone as a decorative stone. It was also found among the remains of the Neolithic man. The signet ring worn by Cleopatra is believed to be of an amethyst and is also a stone of Saint Valentine. It was placed in the tombs of Pharaohs by the early Egyptians as it was believed to possess great powers and was also used as medication during the Middle Ages.

Given the origin of its name from the Greek word “amethystos”it was believed by the ancient Greeks to prevent the wearers from intoxication. For this very reason they would line up the wine goblets with Amethyst stones. The Catholic cardinals and bishops wore amethyst jewelries to shield the clergy from mystical intoxication. Amethyst was always associated with the power to keep the wearer stable, peaceful, balance, sincere, calm, courageous, strong etc and this is evident even today. It is regarded as the stone of wisdom and is known to bring clarity to feelings, emotions and values. Amethyst is also known to have excellent healing properties related to headaches, arthritis, problems in the circulatory system, pain, and of any kinds of addiction.

The stone can be mounted on beautifully engraved dangles, studs or necklaces. It can also be set in a beautifully designed bracelet or a finger ring. The captivating color of the gemstone makes it an apt choice for any type of jewelries. 

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Posted by Roy Izakov.
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